Hillbilly Elegy Analysis

Decent Essays

Hillbilly Elegy is a memoir that is chronologically structured and consists of 15 chapters about the author’s life and family members. In the first chapter, he begins by talking about Jackson, Kentucky, where he used to live but later moved with his grandparents to Middletown, Ohio. Although he liked Ohio because he grew navigationally skillful, the town he lived in carried dark and painful memories for Vance. The author continues introducing his other family members and telling details of their life stories and characteristics, but overall, Vance’s love for Jackson only increased until his grandparents moved back to Kentucky where problems began to arise. In the second chapter, Vance begins by talking about Papaw's early life and Papow and Mamaw’s love story. Bonnie South and Papow were once lovers until Papow cheated with Mamow, however, Papow already got Bonnie pregnant. Mamow and Papow immediately left for Ohio before settling down in Middletown. Later in their lives, Vance notes Papaw's job in an industry and how they adapted in their environment when they moved to Middletown. In the third chapter, difficulties in Mamaw and Papaw's relationship is displayed to convey the imperfections in Vance’s life that contributed to his difficulties. Mamaw was depressed and stopped working on keeping the house tidy because of her lack of motivation and Papaw was constantly drinking and didn’t keep up with his responsibilities. While the children themselves did not appreciate

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